Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Nixon's Unmade Speech

In case you were unaware, today happens to be the 42nd anniversary of men landing on the moon. Human history changed forever once Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin set foot on our celestial neighbor, but despite a decade of planning, training and testing there were no guarantees that the mission would be a success. In fact, there was more than a little concern that the engine on the lunar module might fail to ignite – after all, blasting men off from the surface of another world was something that had never been tried before – marooning Armstrong and Aldrin forever. The possibility was considered so real that a speech was prepared for just such an occurrence for President Nixon to read to the nation. “Fate has ordained that the men who went to the moon to explore in peace will stay on the moon to rest in peace...” went the first line of the speech Nixon thankfully never had to give. The Los Angeles Times has the rest of the text of the speech and more about this forgotten bit of American history over at their website today.
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